…the wall had been built and I had set up the doors…[t]he city was wide and large, but the people within it were few and no houses had been rebuilt. (Nehemiah 7:1, 4)
At first it struck me as odd that the a city’s walls would be build before any houses. The ordinary progression of development had a small settlement growing into a larger settlement and finally adding a wall around said settlement for the protection of the inhabitants.
Then two things occurred to me. First, Jerusalem wasn’t a new settlement, but an existing settlement that had been destroyed. Second, I remembered visiting the construction site of a house in Thailand as a boy.
The wall was built and gate in place but the house was yet unfinished. As a boy I found that odd and asked about it. It was explained to me that the wall was almost always the first thing built in order to protect the tools and supplies needed to complete the house from thieves.
The dangers and threats the Jews faced upon returning to Jerusalem necessitated they build a strong wall for the protection of the people and their supplies even before they rebuilt their ancestral homes.
Before starting any new endeavor, build a wall around it in prayer. Whether it’s a new military deployment, new job, moving to a new town, getting married, having a child, or simply starting a new school year – build a wall around it in prayer.
Prayer is an all too often neglected spiritual discipline. At WBF we’re beginning a four part series on Spiritual Disciplines. I’ll try to keep y’all posted as we go through it.